Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Discussion about the game and its default mods.
User avatar
netnazgul
Posts: 348
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2017 7:32 am
Location: Minsk
Contact:

Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by netnazgul » Sat Aug 25, 2018 1:30 pm

Raising a separate thread to discuss the question.

Point of discussion is software key/mouse sequences (hereby: macros) that are implemented and used by some players.

What I've recently come to think is that if it really comes to players implementing "crutches" for certain game logics, it might mean several things:
  • gameplay itself and game balance "force" players to certain behaviour that is only to be done one way to be efficient and it only depends on how fast you do it, hence the automation. Automatic infantry queueing is one of these, cause generally you want something like 10/5 rifle/rocket ratio and you want it exiting barracks as evenly as possible (2 rirfles, rocket, 2 rifles, rocket, etc). You'd always do it faster and more efficient with a single keypress ordering a perfect ratio instead of manually clicking on icons or using F1..F12 hotkeys.
  • game engine lacks proper options to optimize game control. I've come to use attack move (A+click) as a separate mouse button, because it's not comfortable to always explicitly press "A" on the keyboard for that (also I'm left-handed and use mouse with my left hand, if that matters here), and it's even more problematic now with assault move modifier. Also units tend to sometimes forget their orders, so spamming a-move is not that comfortable too.

User avatar
netnazgul
Posts: 348
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2017 7:32 am
Location: Minsk
Contact:

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by netnazgul » Sat Aug 25, 2018 1:42 pm

What I wanted to point out about infantry queueing is that there is actually no win-it-all queue for that: lots of times you need to modify your queueing - adding medics/mechanics/shockies/flamers into the mix, doing 5/5 or 15/5 or even 10/1 instead. And you can't put a macro on every possible combination (probably you can, but I guess that's some degree of autism to control it).

The question is do we really want to see players competing on how fast, often and precise they press infantry ordering buttons? And we can't even see that in replays, only if we have a POV-stream from a player. I think it will be better to just devise an autoqueueing system that makes soft macros obsolete. Or even introduce some kind of macroing into the engine itself, allowing all players to add their own sequences to keyboard keys.

User avatar
WhoCares
Posts: 274
Joined: Mon Feb 13, 2017 11:28 pm

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by WhoCares » Sat Aug 25, 2018 2:14 pm

Infantry macro is the least dangerous macro that can be coded for the game and yet the only one that will be 100% used.

among the feature i coded so far (wait for my thread on the subject)

hold a key and use your mouse to draw a path for your unit. by moving the mouse the script will queue a amove x ms, resulting in a precise road for your unit with multiple waypoint in amove, just by pressing 1 key.

I have this one coded for some month and mapped on my keyboard, as powerfull the script sounds, on maybe 50 games i played with that script mapped, i used it 1 or twice and more for the "Hey, i have that awesome feature lets use it" and in the end zero impact on the game the few time i remembered i could use that.

All the super stuff i coded are all mapped on my controls but i don't use them out of being sucked in the heat of the game and playing like i always did .... Without them. And when the game is done i greet myself with a "You were supposed to use them and collect data you idiot" So first data i gather is : it is super hard to change your habits even to use advantageous features. (infantry macro does not the same effect, as it gets rid of a tedious mandatory task they are indeed adopted right away)

Well, i'll open my own workshop thread explaining all the stuff I came up with and the feedback i could gather. I still have not enough data to judge what is good, what is unfair and what should be in the game.

User avatar
JuiceBox
Posts: 168
Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2016 12:10 pm
Location: Liverpool

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by JuiceBox » Sat Aug 25, 2018 8:35 pm

I didn’t use macros in all my games while i was active you can check my vids and watch me clearly shift click my infantry que so

My normal mixes consist of 10-15 rifles 5 rockets. I can shift click this to death at inf production time ensuring I don’t run out for an entire game. A few weeks ago I dabbled with a macro 3/2 rifles 1 rocket to see what the fuss was about and all it did was imo save a small amount of spam clicking. Regardless of how well filtered a combo of 30 rifles and and 10 rockets are produced they are still produced at the same time and you only move out for a battle when you have a sizeable force anyhow. This game will always be decided on good strategy and decision making no amount of macros can improve that. Almost everyone can follow a build perfectly it’s the ability to do something afterwards that defines the player.

Given that it’s 2018 and most gaming mouse keyboards come with programmable buttons and macro editing software it’s pretty naive to think that they will not be used. I myself haven’t used a keyboard since around 2008 when I bought a BelkinN52 speed pad and I have programmed my buttons on it to suit almost every game I have ever played since (purely for comfort) does this make a me a cheater because I don’t use a standard qwerty keyboard?

Let’s take a look at consoles. Games like battlefield and cod. The game pad is what the majority of players use as standard but players who go the extra mile get a mouse. Mouse aiming over analog stick is not even close in fairness. The point am getting at is if it’s there To use for ALL then USE IT. Everyone can macro inf production if they wish to do so it’s not difficult

lawANDorder
Posts: 54
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:20 pm

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by lawANDorder » Sun Aug 26, 2018 3:39 pm

(Content was not helpful for the discussion.)
Last edited by lawANDorder on Thu Aug 30, 2018 5:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

camundahl
Posts: 117
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:36 am
Location: Corpus Christi, Texas

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by camundahl » Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:45 am

This may be slightly off topic but related to queing..... I really think there should be a "un-que all in tab" button for when you need to quickly change your build.

Honestly macros don't bother me. It's like using a speed loader in a shotgun competition. As long as everyone can use it it's fair.

lawANDorder
Posts: 54
Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:20 pm

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by lawANDorder » Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:19 am

camundahl wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:45 am
This may be slightly off topic but related to queing..... I really think there should be a "un-que all in tab" button for when you need to quickly change your build.
IIRC you can reset production queues with Shift+Middle Mouse Button?

AMHOL
Posts: 79
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2016 7:24 pm

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by AMHOL » Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:38 am

camundahl wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:45 am
This may be slightly off topic but related to queing..... I really think there should be a "un-que all in tab" button for when you need to quickly change your build.

Honestly macros don't bother me. It's like using a speed loader in a shotgun competition. As long as everyone can use it it's fair.
I see the "everyone can use them" argument a lot, everyone can use a shotgun in a fistfight, doesn't mean it's fair does it?

I think using software modifications outside of the game client is cheating, for example, I could learn C#, modify the client to always have GPS on, or worse, no shroud / fog and play with that, everyone can do that, so it's fair, right?

User avatar
netnazgul
Posts: 348
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2017 7:32 am
Location: Minsk
Contact:

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by netnazgul » Tue Aug 28, 2018 11:25 am

lawANDorder wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:19 am
camundahl wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:45 am
This may be slightly off topic but related to queing..... I really think there should be a "un-que all in tab" button for when you need to quickly change your build.
IIRC you can reset production queues with Shift+Middle Mouse Button?
Shift+Middle resets 5 in a stack, Ctrl+Middle resets the whole stack. But you still need to click all the units in the tab to reset them.

camundahl
Posts: 117
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:36 am
Location: Corpus Christi, Texas

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by camundahl » Tue Aug 28, 2018 1:28 pm

netnazgul wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 11:25 am
lawANDorder wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:19 am
camundahl wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:45 am
This may be slightly off topic but related to queing..... I really think there should be a "un-que all in tab" button for when you need to quickly change your build.
IIRC you can reset production queues with Shift+Middle Mouse Button?
Shift+Middle resets 5 in a stack, Ctrl+Middle resets the whole stack. But you still need to click all the units in the tab to reset them.
Awesome, thank you.

camundahl
Posts: 117
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:36 am
Location: Corpus Christi, Texas

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by camundahl » Tue Aug 28, 2018 1:36 pm

AMHOL wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:38 am
camundahl wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:45 am
This may be slightly off topic but related to queing..... I really think there should be a "un-que all in tab" button for when you need to quickly change your build.

Honestly macros don't bother me. It's like using a speed loader in a shotgun competition. As long as everyone can use it it's fair.
I see the "everyone can use them" argument a lot, everyone can use a shotgun in a fistfight, doesn't mean it's fair does it?

I think using software modifications outside of the game client is cheating, for example, I could learn C#, modify the client to always have GPS on, or worse, no shroud / fog and play with that, everyone can do that, so it's fair, right?
In that case you aren't using a macro.... you're modifying game code.

How would you stop someone from using macros? Do you consider a controller that has a "turbo" or repeat button press as cheating?

You could probably prove your point really well if you can demonstrate some examples where you gain a significant advantage using macros in OpenRA.

Also your analogy doesn't make sense. In a fair fist fight there would be no shotguns..... I'm saying that in a shotgun competition that allows speed loaders, to reload you can still do it manually if you're comfortable doing it that way, or you can use a speed loader. Some people may be just as fast grabbing four shells at once manually.

AMHOL
Posts: 79
Joined: Wed Jul 20, 2016 7:24 pm

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by AMHOL » Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:25 pm

You're using software external to the standard client to glean advantage... What's the difference?

If I were to code it, I'd look for a repeated sequence of multiple inputs within a small period of time, so mashing one key wouldn't do it, it'd have to be a combination of inputs happening in a time-frame that isn't humanly possible, for example f1, f1, f1, f3... within 500ms or so, the timeframe would need some experimentation, but I doubt anyone can press 2 different keys in a sequence 4 times in half a second.

Using macros does give a significant advantage, I've tried it, you don't float and managing the infantry queue is 1000x easier, it gives you time to think about what you're doing and micro that you wouldn't have had before, Bain is a prime example, unstoppable with macros, beatable without.

My analogy stands, the point was that it's not a fair fist fight when someone turns up with a shotgun...

User avatar
anjew
Posts: 505
Joined: Sat Nov 08, 2014 4:16 am

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by anjew » Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:51 pm

AMHOL wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:25 pm
You're using software external to the standard client to glean advantage... What's the difference?
Theres a huge difference between a program that simulates key presses and modifying your client. There is just as many differences if you were using injection.
AMHOL wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:25 pm
My analogy stands, the point was that it's not a fair fist fight when someone turns up with a shotgun...
That's not a fistfight, ORA isn't a competition for who can mash their buttons the fastest.

maceman
Posts: 68
Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:49 pm

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by maceman » Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:55 pm

Yup - tried macros once. Felt like cheating. Disabled.

Having said that I don't get too upset about people that are unable to play well without them. It's not exactly the most competitive game, and compared to a cheat like aimbot, macro cheating doesn't give them too much of an advantage anyway.

User avatar
Smitty
Posts: 177
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2016 1:33 am
Location: Oklahoma

Re: Using of software programmable macros in competitive games

Post by Smitty » Tue Aug 28, 2018 3:12 pm

AMHOL wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:25 pm
If I were to code it, I'd look for a repeated sequence of multiple inputs within a small period of time, so mashing one key wouldn't do it, it'd have to be a combination of inputs happening in a time-frame that isn't humanly possible, for example f1, f1, f1, f3... within 500ms or so, the timeframe would need some experimentation, but I doubt anyone can press 2 different keys in a sequence 4 times in half a second.
And we don't even need the game to stop it for us, we just need to detect it. Something like a "Unnatural input detected" message when a macro is used will give tournament organizers what they need to enforce their own rules. Can make it a checkbox defaulted to unchecked.
AMHOL wrote:
Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:25 pm
Using macros does give a significant advantage, I've tried it, you don't float and managing the infantry queue is 1000x easier, it gives you time to think about what you're doing and micro that you wouldn't have had before, Bain is a prime example, unstoppable with macros, beatable without.
This guy gets it.

Post Reply